RISD and its corporate,
government, foundation and nonprofit partners have discovered the extraordinary benefits of
collaborative research projects with RISD students and faculty—on campus and
around the world. These partnerships challenge artists and designers to focus
their minds and hands on coming up with new ideas and fresh approaches to a
wide array of business, civic and societal needs.
Our partners understand
that art and design lie at the heart of creativity and innovation.
Forward-looking organizations recognize that RISD’s core values of “critical
thinking” and “critical making” provide fertile ground for engagement.
The most typical way
they do this is through a partnered studio, for one semester or two,
custom-designed for each partner and centered on an open-ended question or idea
ripe for mutual exploration. Questions have ranged from “What will play look
like in the future?” to “How can
we best express creativity on a mobile phone?” Students come together from a
single discipline or many to consider the question and attack the challenge
through hands-on research and experimentation.
Partnered studios don’t
try to do what businesses and organizations can readily do in-house – crank out
the next iteration of a product or service, or refine existing ideas. Instead,
RISD harnesses its collective creativity to give its partners in all sectors a
way to consider new perspectives, find new markets and discover innovative
ideas at the heart of their mission.
When each project wraps
up, the partnership generally continues – as a real relationship. RISD keeps the
process of design discovery alive by capturing and documenting each project in
ways that allow our partners to share and build on the innovative process
within their own organizations and with their clients.